- Linking Syrian strongman Bashar Assad or his inner circle to the recent chemical weapons attack is no "slam dunk," according to several U.S. officials, reports the AP. The intercept of Syrian military officials discussing the chemical strike was among low-level staff, say the sources, with no direct evidence tying it even to a senior commander, let alone Assad.
- Maybe of more concern is who actually has control of Syria's chemical weapons stores. A report outlining the evidence against Assad says the intelligence community no longer has the same certainty it had 6 months ago as to where the regime's chemical weapons are stored.
- Separately, the NYT reports U.S. officials as saying there's no "smoking gun" linking Assad to the attack.
- This walking back from the ledge of military action is maybe helping stocks, with the Nasdaq 100 (QQQ +1%) and S&P 500 (SPY +0.5%). Gold (GLD -0.7%) and oil (USO -0.2%) fall back.
- Index ETFs: IVV, SPY, VOO, RWL, SFLA, SSO, UPRO, SDS, SPXU, SH, EPS, RSP, BXUB, BXUC, BXDB, QQQ, QQEW, TQQQ, QID, SQQQ, PSQ, QLD, QQQE.
- Oil and gold: OIL, USO, DBO, OLO, USL, CRUD, UCO, DTO, SCO, SZO, DNO, UWTI, DWTI, BNO, UOIL, DOIL, GLD, IAU, SGOL, PHYS, AGOL, DGL, UBG, DGP, UGL, DZZ, GLL, DGZ, UGLD, DGLD, GLDI.
No "slam dunk" tying Assad to chemical attack
Aug 29 2013, 12:20 ET